Ardas is one of the most important prayer in modern Sikhism that was not written by Sikh Gurus and can not be found in Sri Guru Granth Sahib ji. The purpose of this article is to make necessary changes to the present form of the Ardas so it would be consistent with Gurmat philosophy.
The present form of Ardas was prepared and implemented in 1945 by SGPC, Amritsar. The following sentences or lines which are not compatible with Sikh ideology are replaced with very suitable wordings as listed below:
1.Var Sri Bhagouti ji ki Patshahi 10* and Pritham Bhagouti Simar Kai
Replaced with one word : Akal Purakh
2. Sri Harkrishan ji Dhiyaa-eeai, Jis Dhithi Sabh Dukh Jaye and Guru Teg Bahadur Simareeai, Ghar Nau Nidh Avai Dhai
These above statements promote old “Belief System” and rituals, therefore are not accordant with Gurmat so are replaced with Guru’s names only.
3. Forty Muktays, Hathyan, Japyan and Tapyan are replaced with Numerous martyrs (Anakan Shahidan), who recited and remembered thy Nam. The reason I took forty Muktays out is that we are not only limiting ourselves to pay respect these forty, there were thousands other martyrs who sacrificed their lives for the cause. Any way the storey of forty Muktays is not true, it is designed to down grade Guru Gobind Singh’s leadership skills.
4. Panj Thakhats are replaced with “Akal Thakhat”as it was the only one established by Sri Guru Hargobind ji. Other four are created by SGPC for their benefit and political gain.
5. Nanak Nam Chardi Kala, Tere Bhane Sarbat Da Bhahla. As this is not Gurbani and therefore it is replaced with appropriate and similar meaning verse from Sri Guru Granth Sahib ji, Mahla 3, page 724, (see the Ardas sample) .
* Re Var Sri Bhagouti ji ki also known as “Chandi di Var” is a composition in Dasam Granth. This is an episode from Sanskrit work called “Markandey Puran” describe the war between Goddess Durga and Demons. A man named Koer Singh Kalal who was an impostor, also had two other names as Bishan Chand and Kant Har. He was a man of considerable talents, a Vaishnavite Hindu inside and a Sikh only by name (similar to our present day Sikh religious leaders and Deradars) . He called himself as Kalal to identify himself with Jassa Singh Kalal, then leader of Dal Khalsa. He mentioned that Chandi di Var was written by Guru Gobind Singh ji in Gurbilas Patshahi 10(1751). W.H. McLeod and other modern scholars dispute this claim and they concluded it was written by an unknown writer. Therefore I took liberty to replace this mythical portion of the Ardas with almighty “Akal Purakh”.
Please note there is no change in the meaning or in the central idea of the Ardas, few changes made it compatible to Gurmat philosophy and to recite it in front of Sri Guru Granth Sahib without any hesitations as we should be only reading and saying Gurbani related or Gurbani in the presence of Sri Guru Granth Sahib.
I attached here a sample of the modified Ardas for Sikh sangat or Sikh community at large for their approval.
My special thanks to Joginder Singh Dhami (Winnipeg) for his expert advice and help ( typing in Gurmukhi).
Ramjit Singh Mann